House of the Dragon showrunner Ryan Condal and star Paddy Considine appeared at Contenders TV to celebrate the first season of the Game of Thrones prequel. However, Condal also hinted at what’s to come in the upcoming second season.
“I’m excited to pick up where we left off,” Condal said. “Now we get to fall into the more traditional rhythms of storytelling and Game of Thrones. We’ve always talked about this particular tale, George [R.R. Martin] has too, of being a Shakespearean or Greek tragedy. This series is very much about a house tearing itself apart from within. Now that all those pieces have been set on the board, I’m really excited to tell the next chapter, to see what happens now that Viserys is gone and no longer keeping a lid on things.”
That Viserys (Considine) died in Episode 8 means Considine will not return for Season 2. Although Considine admitted he was jealous of his co-stars getting to go back to work, Considine said he’s glad Condal did not try to prolong Viserys’ role on the show.
Viserys was the king of House Targaryan. After his death, his wife, Alicent (Olivia Cooke), is trying to install their son Aemond (Ewan Mitchell) on the throne to which Viserys appointed his daughter Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy).
“The story was told,” Considine said. “I’m glad they didn’t drag Viserys out. The fact it was put into eight episodes, it just made his arc all that stronger.”
That arc began in the series premiere. Viserys’ first wife, Aemma (Sian Brooke) died in childbirth. Viserys insisted she go through with a complicated birth to produce a male heir, who also does not survive.
“She’s butchered in this process of trying to save this child,” Considine said. “He carries the weight of that all through his story. When he’s falling apart, he’s rotting, his eye’s missing, he’s not the one asking to be healed. Everybody else is, but it’s so much like he’s accepted it. The burden of the crown was too much for a man with a heart like that.”
Viserys’ actions impact several generations, and really all the generations until the time of Game of Thrones.
“The trick was really to show this generational conflict that began with Viserys’ generation,” Condal said. “He and Otto Hightower, his hand, passed down to Rhaenyra and Alicent as they grew up and became adults and had children of their own. This bitter rivalry grasping for power gets passed onto their children. It’s a three generational story and we needed to get through that in one season so we could get on to the Dance of the Dragons.”